Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Quadruple Update

Cason (48x36in, aerosol on canvas, 2012)

Rock the Rails founder Jason aka Cason recently took an opportunity to move on to something bigger, and some of the other staff in Leduc wanted to give him a token of their appreciation, so they commissioned a painting from me. I gave them a deal on it because I worked with Jason last year at RTR and it ended up being a really good time, so I wanted to help out. There are some top-secret inside jokes and references hidden in this one, but my lips are sealed!

Untitled (detail) (12x18in, aerosol and acrylic on canvas, 2012)

My lil' sister Sara loves teacup pigs, and since it was recently her birthday, I had to hook a sister up. Unfortunately these things cost like a couple grand, so with the help of The Googles, I found a reference photo and painted one instead, then took a bus down to Calgary to surprise deliver it at a sushi house! Happy bday sis, much love! Thanks to Nana and Opa for covertly smuggling me in from the bus station...

Ashley's Mailbox (aerosol and acrylic on mailbox, 2012)

This mailbox was my first foray into the art of pinstriping. I really wish I'd gotten a better photo, because the angle and focus in this shot don't do the piece justice. I have a newfound respect for all those old-school pinstripe artists who do these pieces effortlessly with fast-dry single shot enamel and no underdrawings or wax pencil grids. I have a lot to learn if I want to step to that level — this thing took a lot of hours out of me, from watching youtube instructional videos to drawing and redrawing my sketch on the box to painstakingly painting and repainting the weighted lines in multiple layers because the white wasn't popping enough. One of the challenges of pinstriping is the fact that with no background, there's no way to cover up any mistakes, so everything pretty much has to be first try. Add the element of suggested symmetry, and things get hella tricky hella fast.  I suffered a major setback near the end of the piece when the final layer of matte varnish frosted over on the lid, forcing me to repaint half of the top black and redo the lettering — luckily I'm friends with letters so they went easy on me, and my new liner brush came through in a pinch. There's a lot of little things I pick at whenever I look at this one, but overall I learned a lot and the client loved it, so I'm checking the win column. 

Photo credit: DJ Dice

 Photo credit: DJ Dice

I painted local musican and emcee Maigan's car a couple weeks ago at the Ihuman Block Party. She was super open to whatever I wanted to do, which was pretty much the best news possible, so I just did my damn thing and dropped the Tribe Called Quest album title cause that's what she's 'bout! Shoutout to Ihuman for throwing down a dope block party, DJ Dice for the photos and crazy cuts, DJ Creeasian for the party rocking beats, and all the performers for a hella good show. There are just over 2 weeks left in the Broken Arrow Contest, and I'm still getting some great responses — drop me a line yourself when you get a minute! One love!

The Works 2012

Both sides of the archway at one entrance to The Works in downtown Edmonton,
painted in collaboration with En Masse and a few local artists.

A big steel Sea-Can container painted in collaboration with En Masse at The Works

Greetings homies! Over the last couple of days I had the chance to collaborate with the skilled fellows from En Masse out of Quebec. They were in town to paint the archways at The Works, an annual festival in downtown Edmonton, and asked a few local artists to help out. We collaborated on the archway, which they'd made a solid start on before I got there, then the next day painted a large Sea-Can container. Sea-Can containers can be a bit tough to paint because of the deep ribbing of the steel surface, so we went big and all aerosol on this one. I had a great time painting and chilling with Fred and Jason of En Masse, they're some chill cats with serious illustration chops and creativity and they're great ambassadors for street art as well. 

En Masse's group mural style is almost entirely freeform; each artist paints whatever they want off the top of their head with little or no predetermined concept or order, almost always in black and white. This leads to a lot of interesting combinations and makes for some striking visuals as the ever changing memberships give En Masse's overall aesthetic a very dynamic feel that still somehow fits under one banner. On the last day of their stay, Jason decided to go for some bright colours to spice up the Sea-Can. Fred and I were mad hungry when we started painting, so I rocked some giant bacon and he came through with a sunny-side-up dinosaur egg. Word. I was also lucky enough to get a little exposure out of the whole thing, as the Edmonton Journal showed a shot of me painting a big robot for their piece on En Masse. Shoutouts to  Jason and Fred, Real, Carmen, Fish Griwkowsky, and the other painters, Jocelyn Hajash, Jess Fleury and all the volunteers at the Works, and everyone else that came out to kick it!

Saturday, June 16, 2012


Bikeology (36x48in, aerosol on canvas, 2012)

Aloha! What's crackin? This is a piece I painted live a few hours ago during 2012's Bikeology Festival up here in Edmonton. I had about 4 hours to set up and paint it, and wanted to create something loose, full of motion, and funky that reflected the energy of the festival, so I basically just freestyled it on the spot. This was the festivals 11th year in a row (and it's only rained once! mother nature has their back) and it was hella good time. Bikeology is a local, annual festival that celebrates the invention of the bicycle, often with an emphasis on more sustainable urban transportation in general. I can dig it. There were some dope musical performances this year, including Politic Live and Quordal Fusion (who smashed it!), and some crazy bike related activities are open to the public every year — all the audio equipment for the music is actually powered by people on bikes attached to generators, which are set up by Music is a Weapon (a rad local social enterprise). You can also blend your own smoothie using only bike power, and you can roll through and get your bike doctored up by an expert bikeologist. Props to Carly and the rest of the team that put the event on, and shout out to my man Jesse for the linkup! 

PS. So far I've had some seriously amazing responses to the contest from last post — thanks so much everbody, and keep 'em comin'!!!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Broken Arrow / Contest

Broken Arrow (36x24in, aerosol on canvas, 2012)

Yo! Whats good? Here's the most recent commission from the Singularities series, which I finished and delivered late last week. I had a lot of fun with this piece, and a lot of thought went into it as well. I was planning on explaining all of the inspiration and thought patterns behind the work in a verbose & long-winded blog post, as usual, but I'm way more curious what it makes you think of. Shoot me an email at with 'Broken Arrow' in the subject line, and tell me what you're looking at up there! Don't be shy, say whatever you're thinking, and be honest! Whoever has the most thought-provoking or hilarious or most original response will receive a mystery painting, courtesy of me. Get at me!! 

**contest ends july 15 2012**

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Al Fresco 2012

Superfresh (aerosol and rain on canvas, 2012)

(halfway through)

(original sketch)

Greetings homies! Above is a piece I did last Saturday at the Al Fresco 104th St Block Party, along with a shot at about halfway through and the thumbnail drawing I brought as a sketch. This year the block party was raising funds for Zebra Child Protection Centre, a child abuse response centre, among other things, here in Edmonton. The event went really well for the most part, but ended up getting rained on something fierce — it was a big challenge to finish all the fine detail work to finish as aerosol and rain aren't that friendly, but it gone done! Bid on my piece (#81) or any of the other rad auction items right here — 100% of the proceeds go to the Zebra Child Protection Centre. My man Danskee did a super sick stencil too! I also happen to be graduating tonight from a 3-year design program here in Edmonton, and although it's good to be done, I've been in school forever (I studied several '-ology's before choosing design school), so it's been a trip figuring out this whole 'real world' business. I was lucky enough to do an internship recently at the Alberta Gallery of Art with the design/marketing team, including the chillin' villainous design mastermind that is Clay Lowe (a sick designer, artist, and all around rad dude), the slick hustlin' monster wrasslin' Josh Holinaty (The thugged-out illustrator, you ask? Yes, indeed!), the fly friendly force of fashion that is Janis Galloway (of fame, who also happened to organize the fashion show at Al Fresco), as well as a big roomful of other really great folk. After the internship I was hired on for a few weeks to help finish a couple big projects I'd been working on, including a bunch of signage design, some form building, and rebuilding a layout system for an important multipage semi-annual. I learned a ton, and am super grateful to everyone at the AGA for the opportunity and the positive experience! Since then I've been busy with some freelance design work, a bunch of commissions, and getting ready for a summer camp I'll be teaching next month — but more about that later! Thanks a ton for coming through, and I hope to catch you soon!